Description: Published by the American Academy of Pediatrics, this is meant as a nutrition primer for parents. The first edition was published in 1999.
Purpose: The purpose is to serve as a reliable source of information on nutrition for families. It meets the objective of being a basic additional resource.
Audience: Although written for parents, the book reads like a textbook with few illustrations and may be hard to navigate for parents looking for a particular topic. Pediatricians who specialize in nutrition reviewed the book, but it would have been more helpful if registered dietitians also were involved.
Features: The book provides information in general terms, rather than specific recommendations. The preface does state that the book should not take the place of the advice of a healthcare professional, but it should be able to give some direction about where to find reliable information as well. Most parents want something that will give them quick information that is also easy to read. The book does have a nice chapter on breastfeeding with illustrations as well as a chapter on the possible etiologies of spitting up, gagging, vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation, all important topics for parents. There are very few references showing the basis of the information or when it was sourced. Nutrition information can become outdated quickly, and this background is important to have.
Assessment: As a general overview of nutrition for children, this would be a good choice for parents who like to have many sources of information. Other books with more specific nutrition recommendations that may be better options for families include ADA Complete Food and Nutrition Guide, 3rd edition, Duyff (Wiley-Blackwell, 2006) and ADA Guide to Healthy Eating for Kids, Shield and Mullen (Wiley-Blackwell, 2002). For healthcare professionals, Pediatric Nutrition, 4th edition, Samour and King (Jones & Bartlett, 2012) is the most comprehensive available.